Released over the weekend, new app SnapHack is designed to allow users to save snapshots and videos sent via Snapchat without giving the sender a notification (via The Los Angeles Times). Snapchat photos are meant to be ephemeral, disappearing from servers and devices within seconds after viewing, with Snapchat providing notifications if a photo or video is saved.
SnapHack bypasses Snapchat’s screenshot notification mechanism by culling unread photos and videos from Snapchat’s servers. The app asks users to log in with their Snapchat credentials, where it is able to secretly save unread photos and videos to the camera roll. Content that has already been opened within the app cannot be saved via SnapHack, and logging into SnapHack logs users out of Snapchat.
Log into SnapHack with your Snapchat credentials and it will download any images and videos that you haven’t yet opened in Snapchat.
When you get a Snapchat notification or see that you have new snaps, simply open SnapHack first, pull down to refresh, and it will grab your new snaps.
Earlier this year, capturing screenshots of Snapchat photos and videos was also possible during early betas of iOS 7, which disabled the app’s screenshot detection methods. Apple later implemented a new screenshot detection API, allowing Snapchat to function unhindered. Though Snapchat has declined to comment on the SnapHack app, given Apple’s direct support of Snapchat, it’s unlikely that SnapHack will be permitted to remain in the App Store for long.
In other Snapchat news, the company today posted a disclosure on its website detailing its content storage policies. While Snapchat does not store content that has been opened, it does store unopened images and videos, which can be retrieved.
According to Snapchat, it has received and provided unopened content for approximately one dozen warrants since May of 2013, and has been required to preserve content while investigations are ongoing.
So what is a circumstance when we might manually retrieve a Snap, assuming it is still unopened? For example, there are times when we, like other electronic communication service providers, are permitted and sometimes compelled by law to access and disclose information.
Since May 2013, about a dozen of the search warrants we've received have resulted in us producing unopened Snaps to law enforcement. That’s out of 350 million Snaps sent every day.
The company also notes that images added to the new Stories feature are deleted after 24 hours, but can be viewed during that time for content violations, unlike standard Snaps.